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Snowshoeing Butler Gulch

  • Jan 17, 2013 · 10:00 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

Let's go snowshoeing!! Butler Gulch is one of my favorite places because there always seems to be lots of fluffy snow this time of the year! Butler Gulch is an intermediate/difficult trail west of Empire, off US Highway 40 - look for the Henderson Mine turn off. Butler Gulch is a relatively narrow trail with a few open areas. Leaving the parking area, the trail follows the Jones Pass Road which is heavily used by snowmobilers. The Butler Gulch Trail forks to the left at the 0.2 mile point (the Jones Pass snowmobile trail continues to the right). The trail enters the woods on the right hand side of the road, 200 yards beyond the fork. It is a 1.0 mile climb in a conifer forest, from here to timberline. The last section gets steep so be cautious of downhill skiers. There is some danger of avalanches at and above timberline so we will not go above this point.

Directions: Travel west on I-70 to the US Highway 40/Empire exit, #233. Travel west on Hwy 40 to County Road 202 and look for the Henderson Mine sign - it's just before Berthoud Pass and about 8 miles west of Empire. Follow this road approximately 2 miles to the Jones Pass Trailhead and parking area. Henderson Mine is on the left and the road to Jones Pass/Butler Gulch is on the right. Follow to parking lot, park here and meet the group. We'll walk or snowshoe along the road for 0.2 miles to the Butler Gulch Trail on the left.

Weather: It's Colorado, so watch the weather and dress for the weather. If in doubt, bring a small duffle bag with all your options! Always bring extra layers, a warm wind/moisture resistant jacket, gloves, hat, neck gaiter, poles, micro spikes and whatever else you need to make this an enjoyable experience. Please - No cotton or jeans for winter hikes.

Beginning Elevation: 10,350 Feet at Jones Pass Road

Ending Elevation: 11,700 Feet at end of Butler Gulch

Length: 2 Miles to the end of Butler Gulch

Difficulty: More Difficult

Elevation Gain: 1,350 Feet (it's uphill all the way)

Usage: Very Heavy

USGS Maps: Berthoud

Carpooling: Meet at 9am at Wooly Mammoth, Section CC where we'll form some carpools. The lot is located on I-70 West, Morrison Exit 259.

Optional Lunch at Tommyknocker Brewery in Idaho Springs.

Important Note: This is a participate at your own risk event!

Life is risky. I am not a professional guide. By signing up for this hike you acknowledge that you are solely responsible for your own safety.

See you there!

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  • Mollie

    This is my favorite snowshoe trip with this group yet. A mind blowingly perfect day with choice company. Thank you Debbie and everyone who made it so.

    January 18, 2013

  • Randy

    What a great trip and at that altitude no wind. Debbie did another great job.

    January 17, 2013

  • Cynthia

    Amazing scenery and even more amazing there was absolutely no wind. Makes for a much more pleasurable experience. Great camaraderie as usual.

    January 17, 2013

  • Debbie

    Fantastic day!

    January 17, 2013

  • Debbie

    HEADS UP!!! Sorry for the confusion on parking - I heard there have been recent car burgularies at Heritage, so I'm changing the carpool location back to Wooly Mammnoth at 9am, Section CC. See you there!

    January 14, 2013

    • Harrison C

      Good decision on security RTD has own and cameras... so no mooning.

      January 14, 2013

  • Debbie

    Butler Gulch is a moderate to difficult snowshoe trail and starts above 10,000 feet. If you are not an experienced snowshoer or are sensitive to high altitude, this trail probably isn't for you.

    December 21, 2012

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